You didn’t get into HR to stress about compliance. With several current and pending anti-harassment mandates occurring at the federal and state levels, the fight to stay compliant is more challenging now than ever before. To help you stay up to date with these changing regulations, ThinkHR’s employee attorney and compliance expert, Jill Albrecht Weimer, hosted Compliance Alert: New and Pending Anti-Harassment Laws. Here are 3 takeaways from this critical webinar that will help you prepare for compliance changes in 2020:
The impact of the #MeToo movement
The #MeToo movement has revolutionized how the law addresses sexual harassment. Prior to 2018, only California, Maine, and Connecticut required sexual harassment prevention training by statute. After the #MeToo movement went global in 2018, California expanded its policy while Delaware, the District of Columbia, New York State, and New York City passed laws requiring training in the workplace. In 2019 and moving forward into 2020, states that have not previously passed laws are joining this movement by adopting their own mandates.
Different states: different requirements
Since every anti-harassment law has different training requirements, it’s tricky to make sure you stay compliant when your workforce spreads across various states. Both current and pending laws involve their own mandatory training deadlines, frequencies, and durations. Employers must know the ins-and-outs of their state’s training laws as it pertains to new hires, independent contractors, or all employees.
The Federal “Be Heard” Act
Although there is currently no federal policy that streamlines these various anti-harassment laws, there is a glimmer of hope in the “Be Heard” Act. Recently introduced in the Senate, this act requires all states to adopt nondiscrimination policies, training and other mandates for employers, and employee climate surveys. As we enter 2020, more states will adopt their own laws, but hopefully soon a federal law will be passed to create continuity over all of them. We’ll just have to wait and see if the “Be Heard” Act is the relief we are looking for.
Want to make sure that you stay compliant with all these current and pending anti-harassment mandates? Check out the recording of our webinar, Compliance Alert: New and Pending Anti-Harassment Laws, to learn how you can prepare for the upcoming laws and legislation pipeline.